Head Teacher's Blog

Please keep an eye on the blog page and read the entries below to learn about what has been happening in school. 

Mrs Whales

9th November

I hope that you and your family enjoyed a restful half term. We are now heading into an exciting glue and glitter season with plenty of wonderful celebrations ahead of us.

This week has been a lovely week; Willow class enjoyed a brilliant Warburton’s workshop yesterday, learning about healthy meals and the process of bread making. Children in Apples and Pears have been creating algorithms about sandwich making in their computing lessons. The week has been full of sports activities and dance moves. Filming of the ‘dance’ takes place next Tuesday, so please get your permission slips in to us as soon as possible.

The problem of road safety and parking outside the school gates has come to our attention again. Yesterday one family experienced a ‘near miss’; imagine that this was your child-it is very frightening! The Walk to School week worked so well in the summer, please would you put your winter warmers on and continue walking. I am meeting with the new manager of Judges next week; he has already agreed to you parking safely in his car park in the mornings. The Two Brewers managers have also agreed to you parking in their car park. Please leave home 10 minutes earlier and park safely.

26th October 

Thank you for your support over this very busy and very long half term. We are all ready for a break! Thank you to so many of you who turned up to see our pirates on parade. I particularly enjoyed the dancing in those fabulous costumes.

This week, we enjoyed eating cake on our Macmillan charity coffee morning, raising £131.79. We sold lots of books during our parents’ evening and raised £63.05 for Save the Children, and Paola said many, many thanks for the wonderfully creative poppies that you should soon see displayed locally. Thank you so much for all these contributions. The Poppy Appeal continues after half term, when various stationery items and poppies will available to buy in school.

Sadly, we said farewell to Sharon Gale this week. Sharon is taking time to be with her family and explore more creative art projects. She has promised that she will come back and visit us and help us out when we need some artistic inspiration! We are very grateful to Lynn Hardy, who has agreed to carry on with the art clubs.

Finally, please enjoy a lovely half term, whether you are relaxing or getting active. We look forward to an exciting half term full of the joys of the festive season. Please make your very best efforts to get your children to school on time and ready for learning.

19th October

This term teachers have been focusing on making our curriculum exciting, creative and relevant for our children. They have managed this whilst maintaining high standards of achievement and behaviour. Curriculum topics have ranged from dance and drama to healthy eating and pirates! When asking the children about their learning, one child said to me. 'We have learnt how to be safe and happy!' What more can I say! It’s not only about knowledge but how we acquire it.

We are looking forward to sharing your children's progress with you next week at the Parents’ Consultation evenings and we hope that together we can continue to help your children to be safe and happy.

12th October

Well, it sounds as though Oak class enjoyed a lovely week at the seaside, so many wonderful and exciting activities, I was almost jealous!

If you haven’t signed up for consultation evenings, the sign-up sheets are still available in the school office. On Thursday 25th October between 4.00 and 5.00pm our Inclusion Coordinator, Miss Calder is available to discuss any concerns that you may have. Please phone Trudy to book an appointment with Miss Calder if required.

During our parents’ evening we will also be having a book sale; there will be a selection of good quality books for children and adults. (50p-£2) Proceeds will go towards our charity, ‘Save the Children’, so please bring along your hard earned cash! Reminder: for those of you, who have registered, please bring in your ‘old techy stuff’ on Monday for collection. Have a lovely weekend.

5th October

What a busy week it’s been again!

It started with a lovely Harvest Festival service in Church and continued to give us much to be thankful for.

Apples and Pears had a great time at the Agility Games, organised by Hertford & Ware Small Schools Partnership.

Archdeacon Janet visited us on Wednesday; she was very complimentary about our school and our delightful children.

We have enjoyed lots of outdoor activities thanks to the beautiful sunny weather in the latter part of the week.

I am so proud of our Netball Team! They have demonstrated all of the 6 Rs this week – just look at the smiles on their faces!

It will be quiet next week with Oak class away at PGL – let’s hope the weather stays lovely for them.

28th September

The children have enjoyed an exciting week at school beginning with the sunny BRUNFAST on Tuesday morning. Thank you to the many of you who turned up for breakfast, stayed to vote in our PTA reps and supported the children by running around the field with them! Some of you ran around many times to accompany your 3 children - how impressive! Huge thanks to our PTA for organising the event. Please send in you sponsor forms and donations as soon as you can. Thank you!

On Tuesday evening a number of parents claimed their free gifts at our Beyond the Curriculum evening. As a result of this support, we will be putting on another event aimed at ‘Raising Confident Kids’ in the future. Details will follow the next few weeks.

On Wednesday, Elaine Batten from the Broxbourne Foodbank talked to the children about the value of their Harvest contributions for local families in crisis. She introduced a competition called ‘£ on a plate’- the information for this was tweeted earlier in the week.

What a beautiful sunny week it has been; enjoy the last of the summer warmth, the fresh air and an active weekend. I look forward to seeing you all at our Harvest service on Monday morning.

21st September 2018

Thank you to everyone who has signed up for our ‘Beyond the Curriculum’ evening; we are looking forward to giving you your free gifts. I hope that you will not be disappointed!

We are also looking forward to Brunfast on Tuesday morning. We will be hoping to raise funds that will go towards an all-weather surface. We welcome any fundraising ideas from you so please come along on Tuesday morning to volunteer your ideas.

Yesterday, Trudy sent an email to you regarding poppy-making. We would like to create a nice display in school to commemorate the 100th Anniversary of the end of World War 1. If you have any red material that you could donate for our display, please would you bring it in to the school office. We hope that you enjoy making the poppies too.

14th September 2018

Thank you to those of you who managed to attend our Meet the Teacher events this week. We hope that you found them useful. Copies of the Looking at Learning leaflets are available on the school website and in the front entrance.

I am really disappointed to have received requests from parents asking for term time holidays. Both the School and the Local Authority take the view that taking children on holiday during term time can be damaging to a child’s educational progress for two reasons. Firstly, children find it very difficult to catch up on the learning that they have missed, which is often in three week blocks so missing one week is equivalent to missing three weeks. In the longer term this can have a negative impact on their progress. Secondly and as importantly, children can be given a very unhelpful message about the value and importance of going to school.

I will not authorise any term time holidays unless the reason is truly exceptional. The cost of a holiday is NOT an exceptional circumstance. There are 12 weeks holiday in a school year; by taking holidays during the designated holiday periods, you will be supporting your child’s full school attendance, learning and development. I do hope that you will support your child in this matter.

We were sorry to get a complaint from one of our local residents this week- and it’s only the second week back! Last term so many of you chose to walk from the village hall and the Two Brewers; this relieved much of the congestion outside school and made crossing the road safer. We urge you to continue with the good practice that you started so well last term. If you cannot walk and need to park directly opposite the school, please do not obstruct the driveways and please do not park near the driveways so that vision of the road for residents is impaired.

7th September 2018

Welcome back! I hope that you all enjoyed a sunny, summer break. Your children have returned looking very ‘Northaw’ smart! Thank you.

We have two new members of staff to introduce to you: Mrs. Hayley Hood, our new Business Manager, will be working here on Tuesdays and Wednesdays. It would be really helpful if you could pay any outstanding bills so that Hayley has a fresh start.

We also have a new Inclusion Coordinator, Miss Lauren Calder, who will be working with us every Tuesday. She will be working closely with my staff and me to support our children with additional needs.

Meet the Teacher events take place next week. These are opportunities to find out about class organisation and teacher expectations. ‘Looking at Learning’ leaflets, which itemise the class curriculum for this term, will be available for you to take away and share with you children.

Advance notice: on Tuesday 25th September at 7.00pm we will be holding a special event for parents and carers called, ‘Beyond the Curriculum’. More details will follow next week.

I look forward to seeing you all in church on Monday morning, apart from Acorns children. Reverend Kilgour will be delivering worship based on Giving thanks to God. You are welcome to stay and worship with us.

20th July

Thank you for your support and contributions to our sports day and summer fair event. We were so lucky that the weather stayed fair but not too hot! Our special thanks go to the PTA members who set things up and left at 7.15pm on Wednesday after they had tidied everything away. We would like more support next year please so that the workload is spread.

The Leavers’ service this morning was beautiful. Thank you all for your kind gifts and cards and kind words. I really love the oak tree; it’s a wonderful reminder of our children, everyone different just like the fingerprints!

Our next PTA event in the new term will be on the morning of 25th September. This is a sponsored event; the PTA is sending home sponsorship forms just after the holiday. The event will start with a BIG Breakfast, followed by the PTA AGM (whilst everyone gets a chance to digest their breakfast) followed by a Family Mile! You do not have to run and the event will take place on our school field. Further details and breakfast orders will take place early next term.

Finally, I would like to say well done to all the children who have demonstrated the 6Rs and gained special certificates in recognition of their achievements.

Enjoy a fabulous summer break.

13th July

We hope that you all enjoyed a wonderful Open Evening. Thank you to everyone who made the event so special.

We are able to celebrate some good end of key stage results this year: thank you to everyone who has enabled these learning outcomes.

Early Years Foundation Stage: 75% Good level of Development

Year 1 Phonics: 93% pass

Year 2: Reading 100% expected progress

Writing 60% expected progress

Maths 87% expected progress 

Year 6: Reading 100% expected progress

SPAG 93% expected progress

Maths 83% expected progress

As you can see from these results we can certainly celebrate the work that we have been doing on reading. Our focus this next academic year will be writing and this is in our School Improvement Programme. Details of this are available on our school website.

There will be no church on Monday; children should be brought straight into school on Monday morning. However, you are all welcome to join us at our Leavers’ service in church on Friday.

6th July

School life this week finished in a lovely meeting with our new reception parents and carers. It was fantastic to see so many familiar faces and meet some new friends. We were pleased to hear ‘welcome’ information from our PTA members, governors and school nurse. The school nurse outlined some innovative services, which parents can access, and some new strategies for measuring and supporting children’s mental health and well-being.

Our week has been filled with the final assessment of our SEND provision by colleagues from Herts for Learning. Our provision has been judged using the aptGO tool which is an audit and planning tool focusing on special educational needs and disability. The tool comprises of 36 areas each of which requires a firm evidence base to inform a judgement. I am pleased to inform you that 20 of the areas were judged as outstanding and 16 good. We are thrilled with this outcome.

Following a visit from our Hertfordshire Improvement Partner yesterday, we can also tell you that she was very pleased with the provision and practice in place here at Northaw. We have worked hard to achieve these high standards and now need to continue working hard to sustain them!

Well done to Oak class for a fantastic dress rehearsal this morning. Mums and dads, you are in for a treat! What a fabulous way to end the week!

29th June

We have only three weeks left until the end of term and there is still so much to do! In the absence of a business manager, Trudy and I have been busy keeping the school operational by completing asbestos management surveys, insurance renewals and many other documents! It would therefore be of enormous help to us if you would settle any outstanding debts such as breakfast club, ‘active week’ voluntary contributions and PGL final payments by the end of next week please. It would be good to give our new business manager a clean sheet for the start of the autumn term.

Children who enjoyed a world cup lunch yesterday have been given a ‘Spot the Ball’ competition. Please bring this into school by Monday 2nd July.

Next Friday Oak children are due to perform ‘The Tempest’ to parents and carers in the village hall. Please note a slight adjustment to our timetable.

Children arrive at the village hall at 6.00pm Doors open to parents and carers at 6.30pm The show will start at 6.45pm

Each family will be allocated 3 tickets. (Sorry no children under the age of 5, Northaw children will see the dress rehearsal). The tickets will be collected on the evening (for fire safety purposes). Tickets will be given to the children on Monday, so please look for envelopes in their school bags! If you are not going to use all of your tickets, please return them to school as soon as possible. Please ask Trudy if you require more tickets, these will be allocated on a first come first served basis. There will be no charge for the tickets but a donation towards Children in Need would be appreciated. This will be collected after the show.

22nd June

We have enjoyed a fantastic ‘active’ week, introducing the children to new sports and activities. It was lovely to see different children succeed when trying new sports and overcoming fears. Thank you to everyone who has transported our children to activities; from the very positive feedback that we have received, this has been truly worthwhile. A small number of children have been selected to represent our school at the Small Schools District Sports event at Wodson Park next Monday. We hope that they display the good ‘sporting’ behaviours that they have shown this week.

It has been a good time to introduce the children to the Daily Mile. We hope that you will help us to keep this activity going through the summer break as we intend to run a sponsored event involving families on 25th September. More information will follow shortly.

We hope that you enjoy a sunny weekend. Please make sure that children have their sunhats and water bottles next week as it looks like it is due to be a sunny week ahead.

15th June

I have been very fortunate this week. I have enjoyed some brilliant training: the first was about all of us, adults and children, helping children with autistic traits to learn and interact. The strategies apply for all children but need to be made more visual and explicit for those with tendencies. The second training was about anti- bullying strategies. Again it was encouraging to hear that we are using some effective methods at Northaw. High expectations of good behaviour consistently applied and the positive use of Christian values, which emphasise respect for all. Please help us to instil and encourage respectful relationships in our community, recognising our diverse backgrounds, cultural differences and personal challenges.

We are looking forward to 'active week' next week. Perhaps you can encourage your children to continue to walk to school and enjoy keeping fit and healthy! Clean air day, next Thursday, is another no car day, please would you make a special effort to walk and breathe in our lovely Northaw air!

8th June

We hope that you all enjoyed the half term break. This week has been a quiet week, which has enabled us to organise the exciting weeks that are ahead.

You will have already received notification of events occurring in our Get Active week; this is an amazing fun-filled week full of activities and sports competitions on a scale that Northaw children have rarely experienced! Whilst we are able to fund the activities using our Sports Premium funding, we find the transport to and from the events more tricky. We therefore appreciate your support in either taking your children to the events if requested, sharing transport with your friends or paying a small charge to help us cover costs.

Well done to everyone who has continued to walk to school. This is good for your children’s health and fitness and great for our neighbours! The lack of congestion outside.

25th May

Thank you, thank you, and thank you! What a marvellous ‘walk to school week’ response! I am so proud of everyone who has made the effort to walk to and from school. Some children have walked three miles before school! The difference it has made has been remarkable; no near misses outside the gates, no congestion, just calm and happy children. Please make an effort to walk to school as often as you can. Please don’t let old habits creep back in.

We are hoping to design a spiritual garden for our school and this year’s Spirited Arts competition focuses on special places. We would like our children to enter this competition. Please encourage them to make a start using the information below. The Key Stage 2 might like to research ideas from different religions and incorporate them into their design. Only the best ideas and neatest presentations will be selected, so please encourage your children to take care and to add detail to their design.

‘This theme asks pupils to think about holy buildings and places of worship or pilgrimage. Perhaps one(s) they have visited? Can they show in a work of art what makes these places special, sacred or holy? Are they friendly places? Are they peaceful? Good places for thinking, praying or feeling close to God? Children might design their own holy space. Some entries will focus on the idea of holy spaces in the natural world as well: mountain top, river side, sunset beach. What about a holy city? Encourage pupils to read and use scriptures from different religions about what makes a place holy. We’d love to see work on Varanasi, Makkah, Bethlehem, Bodh Gaya, Jerusalem and Amritsar.’

Enjoy your half term.

18th May

My, oh my, thank you for making such a special effort today. Your children look fabulous as guests of the royal couple! Thank you also for your generosity, your gifts of bottles and sweets have been much appreciated.

Well done to all of our Year 6 children who sat their SATS this week. They behaved in a mature and responsible manner and we are really proud of them all.

Next week is ‘walk to school’ week. We really hope that all of our children get to walk or scoot to school. This may only be from the village hall or The Two Brewers but every step helps. The children will be earning footprint stickers for their class. At the end of the week, the class with the most stickers will enjoy extra playtime.

Enjoy a royal weekend.

11th May

We hope that you have enjoyed the sunny week. We have!

Earlier this week, we emailed you with information regarding nominations for the ‘Best School’ run by Welwyn and Hatfield Times. It would be wonderful if you could spare a moment to complete the nomination form. We would love you to share information about the wonderful partnerships that we have with you and be recognised for the excellent provision that your children enjoy every day!

Let’s see, if together, we can win!

Welwyn and Hatfield Times will also be taking photos of school celebrations for their royal wedding issue. We look forward to seeing those ‘special guest’ outfits next Friday.

Finally, next week is SATs week for Year 6 children. We look forward to seeing them use the 6Rs throughout the week. Good luck!

4th May

I have received some lovely work from children across the school based on their RE work on Saints. This work will be exhibited in church at the end of the half term; I do hope that you will be able to find the time to come and look.

In this busy ‘test’ focussed time of year, we need to take a moment to remember the ‘other’ talents that children may have and celebrate them. We are not all academics!

In school we encourage the children to be the best that they can be. This also means that we expect them to be the best behaved that they can be too; in other words, to know how to behave and to respond with respect and responsibility. Most children do this brilliantly. We have high expectations of good behaviour here at Northaw and we really appreciate the support that we get from parents and carers in helping us to achieve these high standards. Thank you.

Enjoy the long weekend. Let’s hope that it stays sunny! Willow Class have just arrived back from their class trip to the Shri Swaminarayan Mandir Hindu Temple. I am told their behaviour was impeccable. Well done Willow pupils – we’re very proud of you.

27th April

This week I enjoyed the privilege of inspecting another church school in the St Albans’s Diocese. The school was a little bigger than ours but nevertheless, understood the need for upholding those Christian values which we advocate in every working moment of our time in school. I am always so proud of our children, when they spontaneously offer kind words or volunteer to help. An example of this is a small group of children who have recently volunteered to be our Tidy Team; they pick up litter, they tidy the cloakrooms and they do this without any reward other than being proud of their effort.

On Wednesday, Governors appreciated the training that has enabled them to focus on getting ready for Ofsted. I can’t believe that the time has come around again! The results of the questionnaire that you kindly completed during parents’ evenings are now on our website but it would be helpful if you could complete this online. Many thanks!

Our skipping competition is well on its way! If your child has been practicing skipping at home please send in a photo to school, we would love to display their picture on our P.E board.

20th April

I hope that you enjoyed a restful Easter break.

This term our Christian value is Friendship. This half term’s family challenge is to make a friendship label for someone who you would not normally call your friend. Observe the reaction when someone receives this token of kindness! Let us know how it goes.

Today we shared our attendance data with our Area Attendance Officer. Whilst the vast majority of our children attend school regularly and on time, there are still a few children whose attendance is well below the acceptable levels. Whilst we understand that illness cannot be avoided, please be aware that loss of learning time has a detrimental effect on children’s achievements.

It is with great sadness that I have to let you know that Rachel McHattie will be leaving our school after 14 years’ service to Ponsbourne St Mary’s and Northaw CE Primary Schools. We wish her much happiness in her new role at St Columba’s School, where her children attend. No more racing across Hertfordshire during the rush hour!

28th March 2018

The spring term has flown by and we are looking forward to the summer weather and longer days. The children have worked really hard this term and recent assessments show the good progress that they have made, some of them quite substantial. This is not only due to the brilliant teaching but also for many children a change in mind-set. We truly admire children who ‘have a go’ and who are not afraid to get things wrong as a part of their learning. Resilience is one of our 6Rs and we continue to ask our children to use this in work and play.

Well done Oak class, who enjoyed a very successful visit to RAF Hendon as part of their topic on World War 2. We were able to cut the cost of this trip by collaborating with Bayford and Ponsbourne schools. We have received notification of funding for 2018-2019 and things are looking very tight. We ask you please to settle all debts so that we can set a budget that will benefit your children. Cuts in classroom support may be necessary if we have to pay for swimming, trips and clubs out of this money. If you have any genuine difficulties with payments, please speak with me privately.

We have received phone calls about inconsiderate parking from our neighbours yet again. This is very upsetting and embarrassing for us. Unless you are dropping off at Breakfast Club before 8.15am, please do not park opposite the zig-zag lines or in the school car parks. Spaces are available at The Two Brewers and the village hall; it doesn’t take more than 5-10minutes to walk around to school. Please allow yourself enough time to avoid any accidents.

Finally, on a happier note, I wish you all a restful Easter. Thank you to everyone who has helped us in school, at the swimming pool and on school trips this term. We are very grateful for your time. If you would like to volunteer to help in school, please talk to me early next term.

23rd March 2018

Our Reception and Apples and Pears children enjoyed a fabulous sunny visit to Whipsnade Zoo on Wednesday. The children behaved impeccably and were a credit to the school. Thank you to the parents who were contacted at the last minute to help out due to staff sickness. We appreciate your very quick response and your time.

Please remember to support our "Tesco Bags of help" campaign which

is currently running in: POTTERS BAR Superstore, POTTERS BAR Mutton Lane Express, CUFFLEY EXPRESS and HAMMOND ST CHESHUNT Express

Every time you shop please collect your tokens and deposit them in our slot in store. We hope to collect the most so ask all your family and friends too!

I would like to invite you to our end of term Easter Service in church on Monday morning. Please come and share the celebration, 8.45am as usual.

On Monday afternoon there will be a funeral in church which may mean extra cars in Vineyards Road at home time, so please allow plenty of time to park responsibly and respectfully.

Wishing you all a lovely Easter break.

16th March 2018

We have been enjoying a rich and diverse curriculum this week. The choir made us proud at the Royal Albert Hall on Sunday evening. Thank you for all the positive emails from parents and carers who genuinely enjoyed the show! On Thursday, children in Year 5 from Ponsbourne school, joined our Year 5 children for a Robotics workshop led by our colleagues from Setpoint. The leaders commented on the positive relationships, collaborative working practices and children’s understanding of coding. Well done children and Mrs Taylor.

Today our pianists and singers performed to an audience of parents and carers. We would like to say thank you to Hannah and well done children.

Our Christian value for this half term is forgiveness. Forgiveness is fundamental to the character of God. Throughout the Bible, God is described as slow to anger, abounding in love and forgiving sin (Numbers 14:18). We have been trying to teach the children the value of forgiveness through our Teaspoon Prayers and the British value of tolerance. Perhaps in the busyness of life, we sometimes need to take time to reflect rather than react.

9th March 2018

It’s good to have a "normal" week at school after that surprise spell of arctic weather. We apologise that the ice and snow meant things have had to be re-scheduled and thank you for your patience and understanding. Our Reception and Apples and Pears class will now visit Whipsnade Zoo on Wednesday 21st March when hopefully they can enjoy a warm spring day!

Our Choir will be singing at the Royal Albert Hall this Sunday in the Hertfordshire Schools’ Gala. I have heard them practising and I am sure they will be great ambassadors for our school.

Today we have enjoyed our World Book Day. Thank you to Mrs Howell, Mrs Stratton- Stubbs and all the staff who planned such an enjoyable day. There were some splendid costumes! 

Thank you as well, to the PTA for hosting our Mother’s Day afternoon tea, and thank you for the lovely donations of cakes.

23rd February 2018

I am really pleased to share with you two sets of attendance figures; one for last half term and one for the first half of this academic year. For most classes this is a tremendous improvement. Well done! Sometimes it is the absence of only one or two children that skew the data. This is why it is important for your child to attend regularly and on time.

Thank you also for coming along to our parents’ evenings. These are good opportunities to discuss your child’s achievements as well discussing ways that we can work together to make further improvements in the second half of the year. I would like to say a special thank you to all of you who completed our questionnaire. The results of this will be shared with you soon. It would be really fantastic if you could also do this online: http://parentview.ofsted.gov.uk

The Year 1 children performed their Minions Dance at Hertford Theatre this week. They were the youngest of all the performers and they were brilliant!

We are looking forward to an exciting week, next week, when Acorns and Apples and Pears will be off to Whipsnade Zoo and all the school will enjoy a creative World Book Day.

I can’t wait!

9th February 2018

We have enjoyed an exciting ‘Staying Safe’ week with presentations from the NSPCC and Network Rail. The children have also taken part in bespoke e-safety lessons with a view to keeping safe when online.

Thank you to parents and carers who came along to the E-Safety Parents’ Evening; Mrs Taylor appreciated all of your positive comments.

‘Following last year’s evening, this was a good update.’

‘I am now aware of how to restrict inappropriate content and it doesn’t feel as daunting.’

Your children’s reports have been sent home today. We hope that you find our comments and requests for support helpful. Please complete the back page and send this into school by the end of February or better still, bring them with you to the parents’ evening after half term.

Also, on the report, is your children’s attendance. Data is taken from the start of the school year. If your child’s attendance is over 96%, this is brilliant! If your child’s attendance is between 90% and 96%, we are monitoring it very closely. Attendance below 90% is regarded as Persistent Absence, and is monitored by the Local Authority Attendance Officers. If attendance is not improving, we will ask you to come into school to see how we can help.

We hope that your children enjoy the Great Northern rail competition. 1st prize-£30 voucher, 2nd prize-£10 voucher, 3rd prize-books and pens. Entries due in on Wednesday 21st February, entries will be displayed at Cuffley Station.

Have a lovely half term.

2nd February 2018

Following on from last week’s newsletter, I invite you to read this quote by Martin Luther King:

The first question which the priest and the Levite asked was: ‘If I stop to help this man, what will happen to me?’ But... the good Samaritan reversed the question: ‘If I do not stop to help this man, what will happen to him?’

In school, we have been asking children to identify their strengths and be proud of them. In times of booster classes, tests, assessments and pressure, it is good to find some strengths and celebrate them. Days at school are jam packed with "busyness", ask your children what they did well today and let us know what they said!

26th January 2018

I have noticed that news headlines this week have been particularly grim. Perhaps sometimes we need to reflect on what is good in our world and how we can make it better.

Having the courage to do what is right has been a real ‘values’ focus for our worship this term and we have reiterated this on a weekly basis. Have a look at this clip that was shown to the children in worship this week.


Teachers are busy making the final touches to your children’s reports. As they are distributed half way through the school year, we have mentioned areas that your children might focus on in the forthcoming months. We have also mentioned reasons for celebration; let us not lose sight of what is good!

19th January 2018

I am so proud of our Oak children who enjoyed a fabulous, informative visit to the Houses of Parliament on Monday. We were pleased to meet up with our MP Charles Walker, who gave us an insight into the workings of parliament and his personal perspectives about his role as our MP. Thank you to Oak class for their excellent behaviour and interesting questions.

Following a PTA meeting today, I would like to say a big thank you to parents and carers who supported our fundraising events in 2017. The PTA has kindly donated £6,000 to the school for an interactive board in Oak class and to update resources in the Early Years. Our project for 2018 will be supplementing our Sports Premium funding. We would like to install a running/walking track, which can be used in all weather. As we move into the warmer weather in the summer term, we hope to introduce The Daily Mile so that our children improve their fitness. Look out for more information on this later this term.

Dates to keep free:

Your children’s reports are due out on Friday 9th February. Opportunities to discuss these and your children’s targets for progress can be discussed during Parents’ Evenings which are on Wednesday 21st February, 3.30-6.00pm and Thursday 22nd February, 4.30-7.00pm. Signing in sheets will be available during the week before half term.

PTA Quiz Night at Old Owens Sports ground will be on Friday 23rd February, doors open at 7.00pm, quiz starts at 8.00pm. Tickets will cost £8.00 each (nibbles included!) Can you make up a table of 8?

And finally...the PTA representatives are looking for raffle prizes to use during this event. Please support.

12th January 2018

I am pleased to inform you that our Looking at Learning leaflets will be sent out with your children today or on Monday. These give you information about what your children will be learning in class and how we would like your support.

Rehearsals for the Royal Albert Hall concert have started; I am amazed at the children’s enthusiasm and the effort that your children put into singing and that’s not just the choir!

Signing club also started today; we are pleased with the increasing number of children who want to learn this valuable skill.

Booster classes for Years 5 and 6 have also started this week. These sessions are delivered by teachers, who give up their time to accelerate your children’s learning. I am sorry if it means that you have to pay to bring the younger siblings to breakfast club. In order for us to meet correct staff-pupil ratios, it means that we have to pay the right number of staff to attend. We are lucky that they are able to do this at the start of their day. Unfortunately, we do not have a solution but if you have any ideas, we are happy to listen.

5th January 2018

We hope that you all enjoyed a wonderful Christmas break. Thank you again, on behalf of my staff, for your generosity to all.

We are looking forward to another busy term of learning and we would like your continued support with home learning. ‘Looking at Learning’ leaflets for each class will be coming out to you next week. Whilst this is a short half term, it is packed with exciting learning for all of us. An e-safety evening is planned for 7th February at 7.00pm. We will be asking some of the children to help us deliver some important messages so please book the date in your diary.

We are continuing to encourage our children to grow their brains by using the 6Rs. Ask your children about them!

We are really lucky at Northaw. We have a richly diverse community; children come from many different backgrounds. Many come to us with special educational needs and difficulties; for these children we are required to make ‘reasonable adjustments’ according to the SEND Code of Practice and they may therefore be treated differently so that they can access learning. Our school is good at adjusting to the needs of the children and in general, most children come to school happy. Please help us by enabling strong friendships within our caring Christian community by being tolerant of others.

15th December 2017

We have enjoyed yet another week full of festivities and celebration. Thank you to all of you who have supported our choir, our PTA event and the many performances across the school. Thank you also for being patient with us during the adverse weather conditions.  Thank you to Terry, who helped to clear the school site on Tuesday morning so that we had safe access.  Thank you to Ginnie and her team, who cooked us a fabulous Christmas dinner again! We are so lucky to have such a brilliant cook manager and team, who give our children healthy dinner choices every day.  We sadly say goodbye to Ms Batts next Tuesday. We would like to thank her for the contribution that she has made to our school over the past few years. We will miss her! Acorns class will have a new teacher in January, Mrs Burton, who has already been into school to meet the children and staff. Please make her feel welcome as she gets used to our school routines.  I would like to take this opportunity to wish you all a very merry Christmas and a healthy and happy New Year. 

8th December 2017

We often say that Christmas is about children which is true; it is a joy to watch the delight of a child opening presents. But Christmas is also about one child, born 2017 years ago, out of wedlock, in poverty, in an occupied country. He became a travelling teacher, told stories that are still told today, and challenged us to accept God’s love in our lives. The story of his birth, like the story of his life, is amazing. We will be telling the story in different ways in all our performances this Christmas and you and yours will be very welcome. Come and hear about the real Christmas story.  We have already been celebrating Christmas with our friends and neighbours; today we sang with our Northaw friends at St Thomas’. We do hope that you can support the Christmas tree festival this weekend.   Our school choir also sang to our friends at Coopers Croft. We are very grateful to Paul at B&L coaches who provided the minibuses to transport our children at a much-reduced rate. Thank you, B&L coaches, for your generosity. 

1st December 2017

We welcomed Pastor Matthew and his team of volunteers from Life Church to give our children a wonderful Christmas experience. We are really grateful to the team, who resourced five stations with activities related to the Christmas story. This experience gives our children the opportunity to ‘dig deeper’ into learning, especially in RE.  Rehearsals for our Christmas performance have begun. We will be taking several journeys to church next week so please make sure that your children have warm coats to wear.  As we start to open our advent calendars, let us remember about the special journey that leads us to the celebration of Jesus’ birth.  

24th November

We have enjoyed a fantastic Friday! We began the day by celebrating Dan Ruge Cope’s 80th birthday. Dan has been a Governor of our school for many years and he regularly helps us out at Church. The children presented Dan with creative birthday cards filled to the brim with birthday wishes. Mrs Flowerdew baked a marvellous cake, which was decorated in the shape of a grandfather clock.   This afternoon, the PTA gave the children a festive shopping experience in the safety of the school library. The children purchased beautiful gifts for their friends and families. These gifts will be handed over to parents during the Christmas event after school on Wednesday 13th December.   Next Friday, 1st December, will be our Christmas jumper/outfit day. Children are allowed to wear their own festive clothes in return for a Christmas item for the Christmas hamper raffle prize.  Along with our Christian value of compassion, children thought this morning about the Christian values of joy, hope and love; these are presents that everyone can give.  

17th November

Last week the children were asked to complete a prayer based on the Christian value of compassion. I have received some wonderful examples of personal prayers along with prayers that have been found through research. I have been overwhelmed by the quality and quantity of them so thank you. We have also enjoyed raising money for Children in Need by wearing spots and splodges representing our compassion for those in need. Thank you to everyone who took part and donated.  Next Friday, the PTA will be running their Christmas Craft Sale for the children. More details from the PTA will follow soon. Also, the PTA is running a ‘Christmas Decoration’ competition. The children will be asked to create their own decoration to put on our tree. The best entries from each key stage will win ‘Buster’ a cuddly puppy. Oh those Christmas bells are jingling…  

10th November

Our Poppy monitors have done a brilliant job over the last fortnight selling a range of items provided by our Royal British Legion local representative. Thank you for your support.  For those who placed orders, you will have received your Christmas Card this week, I was so impressed with the children’s artwork, the printed cards look fantastic and I am sure your family and friends will be delighted to receive such a unique card.  The 13th November is World Kindness Day which fits in well with our value of Compassion.  We think every day should be kindness day but let’s mark our calendars and each do at least one random act of kindness on Monday.  Next Friday, 17th Nov, we will be enjoying our annual Children in Need mufti day. Children  do not have to wear their school uniform on Friday but can wear anything spotty or colourful in exchange for  £1. I found some interesting history about this compassionate charity at www.bbc.co.uk/pudsey.  "Pudsey Bear became a national mascot in 1985. He was designed by Joanna Ball and she named him after the small town in Yorkshire where she lived and went to school for many years, PUDSEY. When we see Pudsey Bear we immediately think of Children in Need. This charity has grown enormously since it began and raises millions of pounds every year. Thanks to people all over the country, children in the UK and across the world have come to know real kindness and compassion, made possible by generous donations to the charity."  

3rd November

The community welcomed Reverend Chris Kilgour during a colourful induction service on Monday evening. I hope that you will all join with me in welcoming Chris, Anna and the family to Northaw - we hope they will be very happy here. We also welcomed our MP, Charles Walker OBE, to our school on Monday. Charles was very impressed with our children and our staff and he learned some rules of grammar during his visit to classes. I spoke to him earnestly about the cuts in funding and how this will impact on children’s learning resources if solutions cannot be found. He listened!  Our football team played a friendly match with the Year 6 children from Cuffley School this week. Whilst the result was not a winning one, the children were a credit to our school, smiling and behaving graciously in defeat. Well done boys! Mr Napoleon will be giving other children a chance to play in the team once new partnerships with schools are developed. Enjoy a sparkling weekend and be safe around the bonfires! 

20th October

Thank you to all of you who managed to come along to our consultations this week. It is so valuable when teachers and parents can collaborate and agree objectives for the year ahead. Thank you to everyone who completed our questionnaire; your comments are very useful and we will use them to improve our provision.  I am happy to inform you that the school council have been working towards electing a local charity for fundraising purposes this year. Following presentations in class and in worship, they have chosen Teens Unite, a charity based in Broxbourne.  We will be looking to do some simple fund raising activities over this academic year.   We are looking forward to a visit from our MP, Charles Walker OBE, on Monday 30th October. We are looking forward to sharing all of Northaw’s good news!  I hope that you and your children enjoy a restful half-term break, returning on 30th October for an exciting season of jingle bells when celebrating the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ.   

13th October 2017

Thank you to everyone who came along to our Macmillan coffee morning; we raised just over £100.  We aim to give your child(ren) the best education possible, through interesting learning in a safe and secure learning environment. We take great pride in living and learning using Christian values by demonstrating the 6Rs. Please support us by emphasising these at home. Sadly, we received yet another complaint from one of our neighbours regarding parents parking inconsiderately. As this is the 3rd complaint since we started back in September, we will be naming and shaming anyone who parks inconsiderately, anyone who does three point turns in the proximity of the school or anyone who drives dangerously putting our children at risk. Also, we respectfully request that children do not exit the car on to the road; this is obviously very dangerous. This situation can be avoided if you allow yourself enough time to park at the Two Brewers or Village hall and walk with your children to school. Thank you for your cooperation in this matter.  Next Tuesday and Wednesday we are happy to engage in parent consultations. Please make every effort to arrive in time for your allocated slot. We look forward to giving you some very positive feedback and this is an opportunity to share and celebrate the good learning achieved so far this year.  We have prepared a questionnaire based on the learning support that your child receives in school. This is for all parents and carers to contribute and we would like you to complete the form on the evening. All answers are strictly confidential and they will be used to inform our practice. Thank you.

6th October 2017

It appears that Oak class enjoyed a fabulous week away at PGL Liddington. The rain stayed away allowing them to make full use of the facilities. You can see some pictures on the Oak Class blog on the school website. I just wanted to say how smart the children are looking; shirts tucked in and buttons done up, it all makes such a good impression. It would be even better if hair could be tied back neatly with small blue bands and bows. Please save the flamboyant colourful fashion statements for the weekend!  We are looking forward to our Macmillan coffee morning next Tuesday, 10th October. Please take a few moments to bake a cake this weekend and eat a cake or two on Tuesday. This will be combined with our PTA AGM. Please come along to support both events in one go! Consultation lists will be out on Monday 9th October. Also on the evenings, we will be asking all parents and carers to complete a questionnaire about Learning Support. Please allow yourself enough time to complete this questionnaire for us as it will help us to monitor our systems and improve our practice.   

29th September 2017

Thank you all for your generous contributions of foods at our Harvest service on Monday. Our collection for the Bishop’s Harvest Appeal will be ongoing until the end of this half term so further contributions however small can be brought into the school office. Following half term, the School Council will recommend a local charity for our fundraising efforts during this academic year although we will naturally, try to continue donating some small contributions to the charities that the children love to support, such as Children in Need etc.  Well done to Thomas  F, who won the summer story competition. Thomas was presented with a £25 Tesco gift voucher from Paul (Tesco Manager at Potter’s Bar) and his team this morning.   Earlier this year some students from the sewing club took part in a nationwide participatory project called the ‘The Village Project’ run by AccessArt . The project which includes some of our pupils work,  is now being exhibited at Farfield Mill in Cumbria but will be touring the UK. Details can be found on their website https://www.accessart.org.uk   Sadly, I have to end my newsletter on a moan! We have received another complaint from one of our neighbours about parking in front of their driveway. This is very embarrassing! Please would you leave home with enough time to be able to park and walk from either the village hall or the Two Brewers; this would save so much congestion and keep our children safe.   

22nd September 2017

Thank you all so very much for supporting your children in the BRUNFAST. Thank you especially to the PTA for feeding us and keeping us topped up with hot drinks. Thank you Lord for a sunny day!  Look at these marvellous photographs of a fine September morning. Well done children!

 In our church assembly Mrs Whales told a  Native American story about The Good Wolf and The Bad Wolf. It is a tale that a Cherokee grandparent is telling his grandson The good wolf was full of joy, generosity and kindness, the bad wolf was greedy, nasty and hateful. The grandparent asked, "Which wolf do you think will win?" The child was unsure so the Grandfather told him, "The one you feed will win".  The story reflects how we can chose which qualities we can feed in ourselves.   Our prayer  Dear Lord, Help us to be generous and  Do all the good we can, By all the means we can, In all the ways we can, In all the places we can, At all the times we can, To all the people we can, As long as ever we can. Amen    Dear Parents and Carers,   Thank you all so very much for supporting your children in the BRUNFAST. Thank you especially to the PTA for feeding us and keeping us topped up with hot drinks. Thank you Lord for a sunny day!  Look at these marvellous photographs of a fine September morning. Well done children!       

Next week we start with our Harvest Festival in church on Monday (25th September). Do come along to support the Bishop’s Harvest Appeal. Please bring lots of Harvest goods, non-perishable, please. This year we would like you to donate FAIR TRADE items as the children have been learning how these products help farmers and families across the world. They cost a little more but contribute such a lot!

15th September 2017

Thank you for your attendance at our Meet the Teacher events, only the Nursery session left (Monday at 11.15 in the library). We hope that you found the information, written and oral, useful.

Today, the children enjoyed a Fruit Workshop delivered by Leanne from Histon Produce, which is the company that supplies our lunch fruit and vegetables. The children were able to sample a variety of fruits including dragon fruit.
Isabella FC and Grace H said "The lime challenge at the fruit workshop was daring and sourly sweet. It was really fun seeing everyone’s faces after" .

Leanne wrote in our comments book "What a fabulous school! Everybody was so welcoming and helpful – the children were fantastic and so well behaved, polite and respectful. It was wonderful to be in their company".

We are looking forward to our BRUNFAST on Thursday next week. Please send your orders and payment for either a bacon or sausage butty in to school by Monday, in an envelope clearly labelled with your name. Children should come to school in their PE kits wearing shorts under their joggers. They should also bring a change of shoes to wear in school after the run. We are praying for good weather!

We have a PTA meeting on Monday afternoon at 2.00pm for everyone who is interested in helping us to raise money over the next academic year. It doesn’t matter how much time you can give, just let us know how you can help us. Our aim is to raise enough money for 16 I-pads, enough for the children to share one between two in class!

On Tuesday 10th October we will be having our MacMillan coffee morning alongside our PTA AGM. If you would like to bake a cake, help on the morning or send in a donation, we will be most grateful.

Overall attendance last year was 96.34%, which is just above Ofsted recommended attendance. Well done to all. Let’s see if we can get closer to 97% this year!

8th September 2017

Welcome back!
I apologise for bombarding you with so much information this week!
We look forward to meeting with you in our Meet the Teacher events next week. You will receive lots of information regarding expectations and curriculum. A curriculum booklet, ‘Looking at Learning’ will be handed out at the meeting.
On Friday 15th September, the children will have the opportunity to take part in a ‘Fruit Workshop’ delivered by Histon Produce. (This is the company which provides our school with playtime fruit.) We have passed on children’s allergy information to the company so we hope that all the children will enjoy an informative session.
The PTA are organising the BRUNFAST for Thursday 21st September. This event will start with a family breakfast, bacon or sausage butties, and be followed, after registration, by a marathon run around the field. The number of laps required will depend on the age of the children! I do hope that you have managed to get loads of sponsors. An extra form will be sent out this week just in case you have lost yours during the summer break. The PTA will be sending out an order form for the family breakfast very soon.
Before the summer break, we asked the children to write a story about an animal. The closing date for entries is Friday 15th September. A prize of a £25 gift voucher will be given to the overall winner. If they haven’t started yet, perhaps a little story telling this weekend will prompt ideas.
We are aware that there have been some difficulties obtaining school uniform and accessories. In order to make this experience more palatable, we have arranged for a used uniform sale to take place on the day of the BRUNFAST. We are also arranging a time for Smiths to come into school and provide a ‘pop up shop’ in time for you to purchase winter uniform. We intend to make this a regular event.
This year our harvest service is on Monday 25th September at 8.50am. This is a little early as Oak class will be going on their school journey to PGL the following week and we didn’t want them to miss out. We do hope that you are able to join us.
Parent consultations this year will be before the October half term: Tuesday 17th October 3.30-6.00pm and Wednesday 18th October 4.30-7.00pm. Signing in sheets will be available nearer the time.
Please look at the diary for other school events. If you require any further information, ask Trudy!
I am looking forward to a very busy and exciting year.

Created by Northaw School Governing Body - copyright 2018